“Contagious Sins” February 21

 

Contagious Sins - Sin is disfiguring and highly contagious. Paul warned that we can catch it from others and that it's better to be thrown into the sea with a weight around our necks than to be a carrier spreading it to others. Have you exposed yourself to some contagious sins? Are you guilty of spreading some sin to others?Sin is disfiguring and highly contagious. Paul warned that we can catch it from others and that it’s better to be thrown into the sea with a weight around our necks than to be a carrier spreading it to others.

Have you exposed yourself to some contagious sins? Are you guilty of spreading some sin to others?

 

Today’s Readings:
Leviticus 13
Psalm 25.16-22
Proverbs 10.4-5
Mark 3.1-19

 

Contagious Sins

 

Leviticus 13

Unclean! Unclean!

 

Leprosy! What could God possibly have for us in all the discussion of bright skin, white skin, scales and scabs?

Notice that God called this leprosy an uncleanness, not a disease. It was not the same disease we refer to today as leprosy (Hansen’s Disease). It is said that Pharaoh (of Moses fame) was infected with it and may have died from it. So it may have been associated with the plagues that God brought on the Egyptians. Even in the New Testament, when Jesus came in contact with lepers, it says He cleansed them, not that He healed them.

Leprosy in the Bible is a type, or a picture of, sin. When God delivered the nation of Israel from Egypt, he told them:

“If you diligently heed the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians. For I am the LORD who heals you” (Ex. 15.26).

God used leprosy as an immediate judgment on sin numerous times in the Bible. When we get to the book of Numbers we will see Moses’ sister Miriam was struck with leprosy when she murmured against her brother. She was cleansed when Moses prayed for her.

We know that the Israelites frequently disobeyed God’s commands by involving themselves with the pagan culture around them, so at times, it may have been a judgment on sin, either in the individual’s life or on the nation, as a whole.

 

Contagious & Disfiguring

 

sin

What does this picture for us? As with sin, leprosy didn’t kill outright in most cases, but it greatly disfigured its victims. And like leprosy, sin is extremely contagious! Paul said

“Do not be deceived. ‘Bad company corrupts good morals'” (1 Cor. 15.33).

Not only can we catch sin from those we associate with, but we’re warned not be carriers!

“But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea” (Mk. 9.42).

Sins like anger, bitterness and gossip, as well as others, are highly contagious.

Just as leprosy resulted in separation from the rest of the people, sin separates us from others! First and foremost, It separates us from God. In the case of unbelievers, sin separates them from the life of God here and from spending eternity with Him. If we are truly believers we don’t lose our salvation, but it hinders our fellowship with Him when our hearts are clouded by sin.

There are, also, times when we are commanded to put sinners, even our brothers and sisters in Christ, outside the fellowship, or “camp,” where God alone deals with them (1 Cor. 5).  Continue reading

“Bad Company & Politics” November 24

 

Bad Company Corrupts Good Morals

Bad company corrupts good morals. That is true of friends, advisers, co-workers, business partners, spouses, and anyone else with whom we spend a great deal of time. It’s true in our personal lives, in our work lives, and Proverbs tells us, even in politics.

 

Today’s Readings:
Ezekiel 39 & 40
Psalm 132.10-18
Proverbs 29.5
James 5.1-20

 

Bad Company & Politics

 

Proverbs 29.5:

Bad Company Corrupts Morals & Politics

 

“Take away the wicked from before the king, and his throne will be established in righteousness.”

The king represented their system of government. Romans tells us “bad company corrupts good morals.” That is true in politics, as well as, in our personal lives. Let’s pray that our president-elect, politicians and other leaders would surround themselves with godly counselors.

But we also need to be wise in our personal choices of friends and associates.

“Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness?” (2 Cor. 6.14).

Bad company corrupts good morals

We can’t always choose our co-workers, but we can be wise about how much time we spend with them during breaks and after work. We can be careful not to listen to gossip, complaining or advise from those who are ungodly.

If we’re already married to an unbeliever we need to fill our hearts and minds with God’s truth and seek to love them biblically while continuing to be salt and light. If we’re single we should only date someone who would be a godly spouse.

We need to choose our friends wisely. It’s not that we should never spend time with unbelievers, but our closest friends should be those who love God and will speak truth into our lives not tell us what we want to hear all the time.  Continue reading

November 24 “When sickness invades your life” + LINKUP

sick woman with tissue on whiteHow do you respond when physical sickness invades your life? Is your first thought to cry out to God or is your first thought fear, worry, anxiety, or concerns about worldly answers? Do you remember to trust God even in the midst of medical treatment?

Today’s Readings:
Ezekiel 39 & 40
Psalm 132.10-18
Proverbs 29.5
James 5.1-20

 

Ezekiel 39 & 40:

Our exact God

As I read chapter 40 with all the measurements, the numbers of steps, the beveled windows, etc., I couldn’t help but remember that our God is a God of precision and order. He is fulfilling every word He has spoken and keeping every promise and He is doing so exactly as He intends!

 

Psalm 132.10-18:

The real meaning of Thanksgiving

He will clothe His priests with salvation … and His saints will shout for joy! That’s us! What a great and awesome God we serve and what a great salvation He has provided. We should be thankful for all He has done. That is the real meaning of Thanksgiving. From the beginning it was always about Him. We tend to forget that in our secular society. Continue reading

August 29 “God’s promise in trials”

Older coupleGod has given us a great promise to hang on to when we’re going through tests and trials. God’s promise in trials is one every believer should memorize.

Today’s Readings:
Ecclesiastes 7
Psalm 103.1-5
Proverbs 24.7-9
1 Corinthians 10.1-18

Ecclesiastes 7:

Funerals and parties

There are so many nuggets in this chapter! Let’s start with verse 2. What does it mean when it says, “better to go to the house of mourning than to go to the house of feasting”?

Solomon is saying it’s better to go to a funeral than to a party, because a funeral causes you to examine your life and your relationship with God. But a party often distracts you and keeps you from looking honestly at your life.

This chapter also talks about the sovereignty of God and how the plans and purposes of God cannot be thwarted (vv. 12-14).

Solomon encourages us to do right, even though in a sin-cursed world, bad things happen to the good and the evil. He reassures us that the laws of sowing and reaping determine that it is better to do right. Peter echoed that truth in the New Testament:

“For it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil” (1 Pet. 3.17).

Continue reading

August 10 “Are there contagious sins?”

sin is contagiousWe take every precaution with deadly diseases like ebola, but are there diseases of the soul that are just as deadly?

Today’s Readings:
Job 11 & 12
Psalm 94.1-11
Proverbs 22.24-25
Romans 10.1-21

Job 11 & 12:

Love believes the best

Now it’s Zophar’s turn. He can’t believe what he is hearing. He’s sure that Job is guilty of some serious sin, so he rebukes him sharply.

While Job agrees with Zophar’s assessment of God’s wisdom, power and sovereignty and he doesn’t claim to be perfect, he strongly condemns his simplistic conclusion.

We, too, need to be careful about jumping to conclusions about others. Whenever possible we should give others the benefit of the doubt (1 Cor. 13.7) and let love cover as much as possible (1 Pet. 4.8). Even when we do need to reprove someone, we should do so in a spirit of gentleness continually looking to ourselves lest we also be tempted (Gal. 6.1-2). Continue reading

April 9 “Ai, a little town with a big message!”

Ai was a little town with a big message! The Nation of Israel had just had a great victory at Jericho. Now there’s Ai, a small town that should have been easily defeated. Instead, they were routed and 36 men died, all because of one man’s greed.

a big message

Today’s Readings:
Joshua 7 & 8
Psalm 43.1-5
Proverbs 13.22-23
Luke 9.37-62

Joshua 7 & 8:

Watch where you park your carriage

In chapter 7 the Nation of Israel had just had a great victory at Jericho. But something happened between there and the town of Ai. Ai was a small town that should have been easily defeated. Instead, they were routed and 36 men died, all because of one man’s greed.

So often we think the sins we commit are no big deal. We sooth our guilty consciences by going through the motions of asking forgiveness from God, but with no real repentance. Repentance is a change of thinking that leads to a change of behavior. Confession doesn’t just mean that we “admit” we did something, it means that we agree with God about our sin, we understand that it is an offense against a Holy God. It grieves the Holy Spirit (Eph. 4.30). We need to learn to hate our own sin.

We also think our sins only affect us, but God pictures for us in this story of Achan, the fact that our sin also affects those closest to us. His whole family died. And the society as a whole suffered. Remember 36 men died in the battle. Continue reading